I went for a run today. It had been some time since I last made it out. I was excited to have some sort of schedule upon my arrival to Galway. This schedule was thrown out of whack when I caught the Galway bug that seems to have inflicted nearly everyone I know in some way or another. Whenever I find myself on a run in Galway, I always seem to wish I had my camera.
The views from the shores of Galway bay are spectacular. There are scattered beaches along the sidewalk I run on. People are out with their kids in prams, or running, or walking their dogs. Small boats dot the bay. An occasional ship of some sort can be seen in the distance. The hills of County Clare are visible across the bay. Tonight, the sun was setting over the horizon. A truly beautiful site.
These runs also always provide me with the time to think. To reflect.
I’m amazed that it was nearly two and a half months ago that Brian and I first arrived in Galway. We were so new to Ireland – we’d been here less than a week. Who would have known the adventures we’d experience in the next 60 days? The ups and the downs of working for face2face. Getting lost on the sides of mountains. Hitching throughout the entire country. Brian leaving to work in the middle of nowhere on a salmon farm. Finding the most spectacular way to take in the Cliffs of Moher. Stumbling (not literally) into classic, little pubs, in small Irish villages. Meeting countless amazing people. And, drinking many a pint of Guinness (so maybe this was predictable).
A part of me is ready to get out of Ireland. Ready to be on the road again. Ready to not have connections to any town. Ready for the unknown.
The other part of me loves Ireland and isn’t ready to leave. The part of me that is speechless at the views from Galway. The part of me that will miss the pedestrianized streets of Galway with their countless street performers. The part of me that loves the pub I’m sitting in with its views of the Galway docks. The part of me that will miss meeting truly unbelievable Irish people. Yet, to continue to do this, it’s time I leave Galway. Lyndon and I were sitting in the reception area of The Massage Center (our living room / my bedroom) this afternoon, and he pointed out that he didn’t think he had talked to one Irish person all day. Clearly, there are plenty of Irish people in Galway – but, as working travelers, we seem to associate with working travelers.
Regardless of whether or not I’m ready to leave Galway, I’m at the point where Brian and I need to figure out what the end of December is going to look like for us. We have to enter the UK by the 1st of January to activate our Blue Cards. We want to try and spend a couple days with our friend Cat in Spain at the end of the month too. Also, we hope to get to Edinburgh, Scotland, for the new year. I think the plan will be to somehow get from Ireland to Spain and then somehow get from Spain to Edinburgh. Activate our work permits, and bring in 2008 in an Edinburgh pub.
And then, who knows?
Brian was in town yesterday and today. He has since gone back to the Delphi, but I should let you all know he is extremely happy with his new job. It’s perfect for him. He farms salmon. What does this include? I’m not entirely sure, though he could talk to you for hours about it. Lots of netting, lots of speeding up the process of natural selection (i.e. killing the non-native species of salmon that won’t last through the winter), and the occasional digging out of a stream so the salmon can swim up it. Just up his alley, but definitely not up mine. The area around the Delphi estate is apparently unbelievably scenic and beautiful. If he sends me pictures, I’ll post them for you all to see.
Last night, Brian and I were having a pint in a pub just up the road from my flat with our friend Emma from Australia. A cozy little pub with low ceilings, a fireplace, and a view of the docks. A wonderful place. We were talking and enjoying our pints of Guinness when the conversation somewhat subsided.
Emma then broke the silence and said, “This is cool, guys. What we’re doing.”
I asked, “What, enjoying our pints?”
“No. Living in Ireland. Traveling. Seeing the world.”
How cool it is.